Hunt for the Tomato Killer
Bedazzled Ink (2022)
Written by Amy S. Hansen
I should have known something was wrong when I woke up. I mean things were looking too good to be true. With only a week before the 4-H fair, my tomato plants have gorgeous red baseballs.
I know what you’re thinking. Why should I, Julie-almost-in-fifth-grade-Johnson, give a hoot about tomatoes? I can throw further than anyone in the fourth grade. And only Jimmy Young beat me running. Why worry about vegetables?
Partly because my mom wanted me to. She said I should do something non-competitive. Then she laughed and said it might even have a calming effect on me.
I laughed too. But maybe she was just a little bit right. When I’m in the patch, I feel the dirt. I watch the bugs. I pull weeds. Calm is not so bad. But Mom is wrong about one thing. Gardening is competitive and I’m going to win.
Julie discovers her prize tomatoes have been made into mush. She is certain her neighbor Stephanie has been making tomato sauce to keep Julie from winning at the fair.
Determined to solve the mystery, she gets her brother Paul, her friend Jimmy Young, and her dog Apples to help. They set up a trap using bells on the tomato plants, and are ready to camp out all night to catch the tomato killer in the act.
Join in on the fun as Julie gets to the bottom of the mystery of her mashed prize tomatoes.
Ages 6 to 10
Bedazzled Ink Publishing Company